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The Blue Guitar (Paperback)
  • The Blue Guitar (Paperback)
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The Blue Guitar (Paperback)

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£8.99
Paperback 256 Pages / Published: 30/06/2016
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From John Banville, one of the world's greatest writers, comes The Blue Guitar, a story of theft and the betrayal of friendship. Adultery is always put in terms of thieving. But we were happy together, simply happy. Oliver Orme used to be a painter, well known and well rewarded, but the muse has deserted him. He is also, as he confesses, a petty thief; he does not steal for gain, but for the thrill of it. HIs worst theft is Polly, the wife of his friend Marcus, with whom he has had an affair. When the affair is discovered, Oliver hides himself away in his childhood home. From here he tells the story of a year, from one autumn to the next. Many surprises and shocks await him, and by the end of his story, he will be forced to face himself and seek a road towards redemption. Shortlisted for the Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year 2016

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
ISBN: 9780241970010
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 181 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 16 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
This engrossing and often beautiful novel is a true work of art that rewards careful reading * Daily Telegraph *
Banville is a gorgeous writer who can nail an emotion * The Times *
He shows himself, once again, as one of contemporary literature's finest and most expert witnesses... compelling and matchless prose * The Observer *
The book is cherishable as a meditation on life's transience, the mysteries and fleetingness of love, the waning of sexual desire, and the lost domain of childhood * The Irish Independent *
An elegant novel of tangled infidelity * The Scotsman *
A brilliant study of memory, regret and inescapable alienation in relationships (...) a portrait of human frailty, it is surprisingly uplifting * The Lady *
Banville's prose sparkles as Orme ponders the nature of art, his life, happiness, memory and love * The Daily Express *
Banville is an expert in masculine interiority... achieving this by a luminous prose style * The Independent *
Banville, the Nabokov of contemporary literature, can turn even a straightforward comeuppance tale into breath-taking literary art * Press Association *
Banville is one of the writers I admire the most - few people can create an image as beautifully or precisely * Hanya Yanagihara, author of the Booker-shortlisted 'A Little Life' *
Deliciously off-beat, gorgeous prose * Daily Mail *
This is a book to be enjoyed for the grand mastery of its description and for the way it nails the challenges we face in attempting to understand the world, others and ourselves from the limits of our own perspective * The Metro *
The Blue Guitar is arguably the funniest and most accessible of Banville's many novels . . . beautiful, heartbreaking * The Washington Post *
Eloquent . . . Oliver has some of the wry comic haplessness of a Beckett character * Wall Street Journal *
The cumulative effect of [The Blue Guitar] -the opening ludic exuberance, the subsequent steady softening, the sheer force of Banville's reflections on grief and loss-is moving, entertaining, edifying and affirmative. The Blue Guitar is a remarkable achievement: the work of a writer who knows not only about pain and eloquence, but about the consolations of learning how to think, to look and to listen * The National *
Banville's descriptive gifts are undiminished as Oliver finally stumbles towards an understanding of love * Mail on Sunday *
Elegant and affecting * Times Literary Supplement *
Self-depreciating and funny . . . Banville, with this narrator who is messily making it up as he goes along, who is writing a dodgy first draft in front of our eyes, seems at once to be having fun and to be utterly serious. Serious about the demolition work at the heart of this novel, a taking-down of the business of writing a novel, all those strivings, strainings, fakings and foreshortenings-and all the ridiculousness of alliteration-for-effect, with a rake of unlikely character and place names which seem right out of a sinister sort of nursery rhyme-all the artifice that the reader pretends not to see as such, all of the impulses and indulgences (stop alliterating!) with which the writer expects to get away. * The Irish Times *

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Reviews

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“Art, adultery and introspective thoughts speckle the pages in this rambling and poetic character piece from the winner of the 2005 Man Booker Prize.”

Oliver Orme is a rakish sort of fellow. A somewhat celebrated artist who is now struggling to pick up a paintbrush, Orme instead spends his time stealing small objects from every place he visits. His current... More

Hardback edition
1 similar book recommended
13th September 2015
Helpful? Upvote 34

“Great writing, but doesn't add up to much in the end”

This is a superbly written book (of course it is - it's John Banville) but I was left with the feeling that I'd just read an awful lot of superb writing without the writing having said all that much.

The... More

Hardback edition
4th September 2015
Helpful? Upvote 29

“memorable characters”

The blue Guitar is the story of Oliver Orme. Oliver who used to be a painter confesses that he has a shameful secret for stealing. He claimed that he did not steal for profit, but the owners he stole from didn't... More

Hardback edition
14th October 2015
Helpful? Upvote 19

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